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Emotions are taboo, so shut up and deal with it

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posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 06:48 AM
First of all, this is an emotional decompression. You’ve been warned. Turn back now or have your tl;dr ready to post, which is just charming by the way. This is my pillow—let me punch it!

I’m a misfit, I’m a black sheep, I’m an undesirable. I've managed to lose every friend I’ve ever had. I've managed to alienate myself from my entire family.

I have spent a great part of my life trying to understand why this is, and more importantly, how to change it! I have been criticized for being too sensitive and for being overly emotional. I have been accused of needing to be the center of attention, and for being addicted to drama.

I dealt with that by turning inward. I decided to keep my mouth shut as much as possible, and to hold my cards very close to my chest. I think I actually became introverted (if that’s possible) as a countermeasure to all the rebukes I’ve had to endure from friends and family.

Then I was criticized for being too quiet, too negative, or else just plain antisocial. I’ve actually been commanded to “just smile and be happy,” even if—or especially if!—this isn’t how I felt. I used to be very outgoing, and looking back, I can barely even imagine being that way again.

A good example of this was when I was in college. At the start of every semester I was overjoyed at the opportunity to make new friends, to take on new challenges, and to grab life by the mcnuggets! By the end of the semester I would be a cynical, bitter husk of a human being, finding that my once-held outlook was only a path leading to disappointment.

I lost that drive, and started to believe that the mask, the persona that I project is much more important than what I actually feel. No one is actually interested in my feelings, just the makeup I use to hide them—a look that says, “I’m content.. no need to share feelings!”

If I come off as confident and outgoing, I’m criticized for being an arrogant show-boat.

If I come off as quiet and reserved, I’m criticized for being an antisocial jerk.

If I make any sort of display of emotion or expression at all, I’m criticized for being a drama queen.

I wear none of these masks very well. Nothing seems to fit.

What am I supposed to do? Who am I supposed to be? I swear I just want to default to the lowest common state of social neutrality and respond with LOL to everything and everyone for the rest of my life. I’m sure that would please more people than being myself. I might actually get someone to value my company and companionship that way.

When I act more closely to being myself is when I get weird reactions—like I’m eccentric and kooky. I’m usually very enthusiastic, engaged, and curious—I ask people how they feel and share my feelings as well. This is when I feel more positive and like I’m in my natural state of being. But it doesn’t do me any good. People still snicker and turn away. I have not managed to have one lasting, meaningful dialogue in my life—they all run their course very quickly and crash into a brick wall. It hurts. Heck, the bartender down the road knows more about me than anyone else in the world—and well, they don’t really have a choice but to put up with me (no I’m not drunk right now.)

Why has emotional expression become so taboo? Emotion has so many negative connotations attached to it. It is viewed as the polar opposite to rationality. If you’re emotional, clearly you’re also irrational, right? WRONG! It is often considered “wimpy” (especially for men) to discuss feelings and emotions. It is often looked upon with derision (for both genders) to discuss feelings and emotions. It is an outright hallmark of weakness and instability! Why, why, why?

Why are we a society of pointed-eared Vulcans? The only thing I see as socially acceptable in all arenas is deprecating sarcasm—this is normative, whereas emotion is subject to said ridicule, rudeness, and sarcasm. Sarcasm just seems to be a posture of control, confidence, and social competence.

I have been pushed and pulled and split down the middle where I don’t even know how to approach or interact with anyone anymore. I’m afraid to make noise, I’m afraid to stay quiet. I’m afraid to share, I’m afraid to stay on my island. Damned if I do! Damned if I don’t!

I just run around and around in this stupid loop between who I want to be and who I think others want me to be. And neither seems to work. I have lost friends for both reasons: either too open or too closed; and even for being too unpredictable (embodying both qualities as I saw fit.) Where does balance and harmony reside? I wish I knew!

I don’t know exactly what it is I want to say. I’m clearly just emotional right now and therefore my entire rant and point of view is laughable first, and dismissible secondly.

I do know I want to say, for all of you that have positive, growing relationships with friends, with family, with whoever is in your life—for those who can befriend strangers and acquaintances and share any kind of understanding with each other, can communicate and find enrichment in other peoples’ company…

Please just stop a moment and count your blessings. Do not take it for granted. You have been graced with something that I and many others can’t demonstrate, can’t fathom— and can only imagine, can only dream of: being accepted.

edit on 25-7-2014 by NarcolepticBuddha because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:08 AM
My first impression is that you are too worried about what other people think about you. There are situations when you should put on your "mask," like when you're being questioned by the police or before a judge in court. Otherwise, I'd try just being yourself. Good manners and kindness go a long way. Nobody likes an a-hole. If someone doesn't like you, just let them move along and don't let it scar your ego too much. Just my two cents.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:14 AM
a reply to: skunkape23

Possibly. I find that I can sometimes make a good first impression. The more people get to know me, the more I open up, the quicker they get the hell out of Dodge!

I give up. I really do. I give up!

But thanks for your reply. Much appreciated for taking the time to read and respond.

edit on 25-7-2014 by NarcolepticBuddha because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:19 AM
a reply to: NarcolepticBuddha

By any chance, are you a boar in chinese astrology?
^^ Bad opening to a post maybe but.. are you?

I somewhat connected with your post, and my advice would be something in these lines:

Make your own, right choices. Don't be judged ( --> fooled) by others opinion about this and that. Don't try to behave like others would like you to, thats usually purely misleading, and you'll get hurt. Often, people are afraid of strong persons, those who still have the connection to "true self" or something like that.

Usually, what ever you do, you are correct doing just that, if it feels good. Life is vague experience, just try to make the best of it.

...and keep being true to yourself, like you have done. Or something. (...muttering because of language-barrier)

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:25 AM

originally posted by: menneni
a reply to: NarcolepticBuddha
chinese astrology

I think I'm a snake.

And I will continue being myself. Coming to terms with the fact that being myself isn't enough is a whole other matter though

edit on 25-7-2014 by NarcolepticBuddha because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:30 AM
Humanity has got too shallow for it's own good.

As is being shown more and more each day, the 'reality' created by media and governments is based on a charade of power and control, it depends on the masses being less than intellectually explorative.

History has shown, those that step out of that 'norm' of blase unquestioning allegiance to the constructed 'acceptable' de jour have often been excluded and treated as pariah.

The Beatnik / Bohemian groups were turned into dr*g taking hippies, placated and inactive, the questioning intellectuals of the day often cited as 'outsiders', and now derided as 'conspiracy theorists' or crazy.

Keeping it mundane and shallow is the 'order of the day' according to media and stepping outside of that is construed by some as an 'unknown quantity' that might lead down paths they do not want to face as it might challenge their 'cosy' government sponsored belief system. And who knows where that might lead, right?

So if you want to keep friends, it's often best to keep it shallow, paint on the mask and keep the deep emotions to yourself or those that can handle that level of depth.
edit on 25-7-2014 by theabsolutetruth because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:31 AM
Have you ever tried to connect with people who are old or old souls that have interest in healing like for instance Reiki? If you are lucky you might find people who want to help you for you and not for some external validation.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:33 AM
that sounds rough. it's no picnic being lonely.

could be a few things. i dunno what the deal is with your family, but if you're having problems socially, here's where i'd tackle it. most people aren't going to be ok with listening to you talk about your negative feelings. they'll feel imposed upon, uncomfortable, and resentful. it's ok to unload on a close friend once and a while, but there's a reason why therapists get paid so much. it sucks to have to share the burden of someone else's pain.

it's not always easy to own and manage your emotions, but it's part of being an adult.

there's also a middle way between shutting down and withdrawing and overshare. try asking people about themselves, not only does it take your focus off of your own problems, it helps you connect with and understand other people.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:33 AM

originally posted by: theabsolutetruth
So if you want to keep friends, it's often best to keep it shallow, paint on the mask and keep the deep emotions to yourself

It kills my spirit. I feel like such a hypocrite doing this that I can't keep up the act for very long.

+2 more 
posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:34 AM
a reply to: NarcolepticBuddha

Hey Narco!

Black sheep are my favourite, lol.

I finally decided that other peoples' opinions of me is none of my business.
I am completely me, completely real...all the time now. I don't ever 'act' a certain way to fit in.
I like who I am, and have complete confidence that I am a good person.

I dress how I like, wear my hair how I want to...and am as silly & weird as I want to be.
The strange thing is, that my confidence now seems to attract people to me...all the time.

Stop trying to 'fit in'...just be yourself. You don't want people to be attracted to a 'persona' anyways, right?
If they don't like you, they can move on.
Be comfortable with your weirdness, I am.


posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:45 AM

originally posted by: jacygirl
a reply to: NarcolepticBuddha

I finally decided that other peoples' opinions of me is none of my business.

I dress how I like, wear my hair how I want to...and am as silly & weird as I want to be.
The strange thing is, that my confidence now seems to attract people to me...all the time.

That is one of the keys to happiness, IMHO.

Reality is, you cannot control what people think about you or how they see you, how they judge you. Therefore you should not even try.

Just INPUT, and feel the OUTPUT.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:51 AM
a reply to: NarcolepticBuddha

Talking of spirits, the very shallowness of society is probably the cause of people drinking too much alcohol and most requiring it in many settings.

Another way of dealing with it is doing something constructive, like a hobby or activity then that can be a talking point as well as a shared interest.

Most of the human interactions on a daily basis are of the shallow sort and most work places it is essential as if people were to speak the truth it would offend many.

The Germans are pretty good at truthful and meaningful interactions, they are very conscientious and people are expected to comply with a cohesive constructive society, in the workplace and generally. If a person was stepping out of line, for example with loud music then it is dealt with rationally, instead of ignored as a 'persons right' as it involves the entire community, also people are sort of expected to join extra curricular activities such as hobbies, clubs, choir groups etc after work and at the weekends as the norm, so they are taking part in the community as part of their daily routine.

There are a lot of lessons that can be learnt in making a constructive integrated society from many cultures.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 07:53 AM
There is a control system that most people fit right into. They accept that really as true and go about there lives with other similarly thinking people. They have no desire to question things, let alone their feelings. Feelings are a weakness because we lack the control so the emotions become hidden. Emotions are really just ego expressing itself, knowing this and understanding how society has indoctrinated everyone to feel and act a certain way, one should always show restraint when expressing oneself.

There is another group who don't accept the control system, they chose the blue pill, fine they go to a separate control system that they will accept also. Outcome is the same either way, only the second control system is smaller with less like minded people. Either way you're trapped but you can at least try to find those few like minds or go incognito into the large control system and masquerade as one of them.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 08:01 AM
a reply to: NarcolepticBuddha

"Why has emotional expression become so taboo?"
I suspect that one major contributor to this is the fact that a great degree of our social communication is now done online or over texting, which is for the most part a blank, emotionless medium. Given enough time, display of and reading of emotions may become a foreign concept.

No matter what you do, who you are, what you believe or feel or think, there will always be people who criticize you for it. I don't even bother with people anymore.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 08:37 AM
a reply to: jacygirl
I have a feeling the two of us would get along just fine.
I have had the same feelings as the Buddha is experiencing. I went through a long dark period where I pretty much became an alcoholic hermit and contemplated ending it all.
I just started being myself and stopped caring about what others think about me.
My dad can wonder if I'm a Commie queer. The Christians can wonder if I'm Satan spawn. The cops can think I'm a dope head because I have long hair. I don't care. That is their problem, not mine.
A good dog has been a blessing in hard times. My solitude has allowed me to focus on developing my artistic skills. I have no lack of friends or problems making new ones now.
I believe this is because, being a reject, I have learned to love and accept others unconditionally.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 08:40 AM
a reply to: NarcolepticBuddha

I know exactly where you are coming from; I have been there myself.

It's better to be yourself than to pretend to be someone else just to be popular. Cherish what makes you unique because it could be worse-you could end up one of the herd who sacrifices independent thought for a chance at popularity, like some of the people I once called friends. Nowadays all they do is post their unremarkable achievements on facebook to their 'friends' that they have never met or never will meet-they have become shallow and egocentric and have forgotten who they are and what they stand for.

And at the end of the day the amount of friends you have does not equate to success-The bond you share with the friends you do have can only strengthen in time, and in a time where a friend is only a click away that means a lot.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 08:41 AM
Stop worrying what others think .. be yourself .. its your life .. live it ..
If others dont like it then thats their problem NOT yours.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 08:43 AM
a reply to: skunkape23

Wow, well said skunkape! (I think we'd get along too!!)

I've also had my 'dark night of the soul'...became a hermit, and considered ending it.
After a lot of prolonged suffering, both physically and emotionally...I have finally found my true self...and I like her!
I also love and accept others unconditionally.

When people say to me now, "I don't know how to act..." I tell them, "Don't act...just be."
Why is that such a difficult concept for people to grasp?

I also no longer care if everybody likes me or not. Funny thing is that I don't care...people seem to like me even more.

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 08:46 AM

originally posted by: Expat888
If others dont like it then thats their problem NOT yours.

It is my problem though. My problem that I seem totally incapable of being anything but a lonely, social reject. I'm desperate to change this. Frankly, saying "to hell with what others think," isn't working either.

It's a major problem. In case you're wondering, I am currently seeking professional help for this as well.

edit on 25-7-2014 by NarcolepticBuddha because: (no reason given)

posted on Jul, 25 2014 @ 08:49 AM
It seems the predominant advice is "be yourself", but it sounds to me like you have lost yourself and forgotten who you are. I am in a similar situation. In college I had lots of friends, had parties at my house, dated all the time, but now I sit alone most nights, have few friends, and I just had my first date in three years last Saturday. I have also lost who I was. I am no longer that extremely outgoing individual who had a full social calendar.

I am afraid there is no going back. This is not necessarily a bad thing. There was something in you that needed changing. You just have to keep moving forward and redefine yourself. Most importantly, stay true to you. Be happy with who you are and give yourself love. If you don't love yourself, it is very difficult for others to.

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